News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


20 years of innovation in mental health nursing recognised

Twenty years of innovation in mental health nursing recognised

Capital & Coast District Health Board (CCDHB) celebrates two decades of pioneering graduate mental health nursing this March.

The Certificate of Entry to Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Practice was the first of its kind in New Zealand when it commenced in February 1995 with 30 new graduates, and was established 10 years before any other new graduate nursing programme in the country.

“Since then more than 700 new graduates have completed this programme, and many of them are still working with us today,” says Toni Dal Din, director of nursing for the 3DHB Mental Health, Addictions, and Intellectual Disability service.

One of those people is Donna Bresaz, who currently works as an afterhours co-ordinator for CCDHB’s regional forensic mental health service.

“It was a good solid foundation for my career and I’ve had fantastic opportunities. I went on to complete a Masters in Nursing and postgraduate forensic psychiatry and I think that’s because I started doing that kind of thing from the beginning.”

Now known as the Nursing Entry to Specialist Practice (NESP) programme, it is the only recognised entry qualification for those working in the national Mental Health and Addictions sector, with 149 places funded each year across New Zealand.

This year CCDHB welcomed 24 new graduates into the programme. Lucie Irwin-Whitney, who completed the NESP programme last year, says finding her feet as a mental health nurse was challenging, but says “incredible support from CCDHB staff, Whitireia Polytechnic, and my colleagues made it so much easier”.

“No matter where my nursing career takes me in the future, I know that the experiences and training I had with NESP will follow me and continue to influence my practice.”

CCDHB is part of the sub-regional 3DHB Mental Health, Addictions & Intellectual Disability Service, which provides a variety of regional and national mental health services.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


DOC Alert: Penguins Ignore Police, Return To Sushi Shop

Department of Conservation rangers are on high alert for 'penguin call-outs' after they've been spotted waddling around Wellington. Yesterday the little blue penguins had to be removed from under a sushi store near the Wellington railway station, not once - but twice. More>>

Baldwin St's Steep Decline: Welsh Town Beats Dunedin For Steepest Street

Harlech, a sleepy town set in the hills of North Wales, boasts a beautiful seaside, a 13th century castle and stunning panoramic views. But the town can now add something else to the list - Harlech is officially the home of the world’s steepest street. More>>


Sport: England Wins Cricket World Cup After Super Over

New Zealand have cruelly lost the Cricket World Cup final after a Super Over - a decider more usually associated with the shorter Twenty20 format of the game. More>>


'High-Level Talks': Lord Of The Rings TV Series To Film In NZ

Amazon needed reassurance after the Christchurch terrorist attacks that New Zealand was still a safe place to film the world's most expensive television series. More>>




  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland